Just Stop Oil: “Would the suffragettes have marched on the pavement?”

Just Stop Oil supporters are out marching in central London this morning. The Just Stop Oil supporters have been marching every since the 24th of April to demand an end to all new oil, gas and coal projects in the UK. [1]

At around 8:40am, 28 Just Stop Oil supporters began marching on Lambeth Palace Road towards Westminster Bridge. Police were on scene immediately and by 8:55 had issued a Public Order Act (Section 12) notice, removing the supporters’ right to peacefully march in resistance to the government’s genocidal policies. A further march is expected later this morning. 

One of those taking action this morning, Hannah Taylor, 22, a maths graduate pursuing a masters, from Derbyshire, said:

“I am marching today because at 22 years old I am unsure if planning for my future is even realistic. People in the Global South have been suffering the catastrophic effects of climate collapse for years and we are now seeing British homes lost to floods and wildfires as well as shortages in the supermarkets due to crop failure.”

“Yesterday, I was asked to march on the pavement. Would the suffragettes have marched on the pavement? I am marching today to demand that this criminal government take the basic first step of stopping new oil and gas projects. It’s what all of the world’s climate scientists are telling us has to happen, right now, if we are to survive.”

Another of those taking action this morning, Lewis Conroy, 22, a software developer, from Stirling, said:

“We’re running out of time. Every day we hear more and more news of apocalyptic weather events and hear tales of more and more farmers going out of business, because their crops are failing. Anyone not corrupted by the oil industry knows that new oil, gas and coal is completely suicidal. History shows we need to get on the streets. As annoying as it can be, this is how change happens.”

The action comes amid news that the intense wildfires that have spread across Alberta in Canada in recent days have forced the shutdown of 3.7% of the country’s oil and gas production, as well as forcing 30,000 people from their homes. Around 90 wildfires have started as the province experiences a record breaking heatwave with temperatures 10-15C above normal. [2]

Elsewhere, in a further illustration of how climate collapse is impacting every aspect of our lives; Formula 1 has been forced to evacuate the track at Imola due to the risk of ‘floods and landslides’ after days of above-normal rainfall in the Emilia Romagna region. Rivers swollen by days of downpours have flooded some towns in northern Italy forcing some residents to flee to their rooftops. [3][4]

Since the Just Stop Oil campaign launched on 14th February 2022, there have been over 2,100 arrests and 138 people have spent time in prison, many without trial. There are currently two Just Stop Oil supporters serving three year prison sentences for resisting new oil, gas and coal.

We stand with these political prisoners, with the 1,800 victims of the UK’s broken criminal justice system, imprisoned for over a year without trial, and with the 1,700 murdered across the global south, for protecting all our lives. Normal people must come together to resist these criminal governments and hold them to account for their genocidal policies. [5][6]

Just Stop Oil is calling on everyone to get off the sidelines and join in civil resistance against new oil, gas and coal.

The time is now. Join us and slow march while you still can. Our indefinite campaign of civil resistance is underway and will not end until our government makes a meaningful statement halting new fossil fuel projects in the UK. 

Join Just Stop Oil on a slow march at midday every Saturday, at Parliament Square until we win. 

ENDS

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Notes to Editors

[1] Just Stop Oil is a coalition of groups working together to demand that the government immediately halt all future licensing and consents for the exploration, development and production of fossil fuels in the UK. Just Stop Oil is a member of the A22 Network of civil resistance projects. Climate Emergency Fund is Just Stop Oil’s primary funder for recruitment, training, and capacity building.

Just Stop Oil ‘Blue Lights’ policy: our policy is, and has always been, to move out of the way for emergency vehicles with siren sounding and ‘blue lights’ on.

[2] https://news.sky.com/story/canada-wildfires-force-shutdown-of-oil-and-gas-production-12882020

[3]https://www.motorsport.com/f1/news/imola-f1-paddock-evacuated-ahead-of-flood-threat/10470179/

[4] https://apnews.com/article/italy-floods-venice-rain-emilia-romagna-0c14ed1883e785c452139a31ebd55a99

[5] Fair Trials reports that the number of people being held in prison without trial in England and Wales is at its highest for over 50 years, with 1,800 people in prison without trial for at least a year. https://www.fairtrials.org/articles/news/highest-number-of-people-on-remand-in-england-and-wales-for-over-50-years/

[6] A recent report from Global Witness says that more than 1,700 people have died while trying to prevent mining, oil drilling or logging on their lands. https://www.globalwitness.org/en/press-releases/deadly-decade-land-and-environmental-activists-killing-every-two-days/